Happy Beltane! Beltane falls about halfway between the Spring Equinox and Summer Solstice, and six months away from Samhain. The days are getting longer, flowers are in full bloom, and fertility is in the air! It is truly a time to see abundance blossom, see ourselves thrive and grow, and to celebrate love, light, and our sexuality. Beltane usually started at the end of the day on April 30th and is celebrated all the way until sundown on May 1st (it can be observed on October 31-November 1 in the southern hemisphere).
Sometimes we think of May 1st as an unofficial start to summer, and this is usually celebrated with fire in many ways. In the olden days, Beltane fires were incredibly magickal, and we believed that by walking in between two of the bonfires, we were creating protection for ourselves, livestock, families, etc. Often, cows would be walked between the fires so the smoke could blow over the cattle because they thought it would give them continued life and endurance. Fire is usually the most strongly associated with Beltane, but water is not to be overlooked! Water is all about connecting to beauty and sexuality, which Beltane is definitely celebrating. Another huge symbol of Beltane is flowers! Yellow flowers are strongly associated with Beltane because it’s the closest color to the sun, fire, etc.
In the Southern Hemisphere, people are celebrating Samhain (yes, even though it’s not Halloween!). Here is the free Samhain Guide!
So how can we honor this occasion today? I’ve got ten ideas for you, and they’re all super doable.
10 Ways To Celebrate Beltane
1.Create/redo your altar. A perfect way to set the mood for Beltane is to create an altar as a sacred space. Supplies/materials to consider using for your Beltane altar include: yellow flowers, daisies, ivy, Lily of the Valley, May Pole, ribbons, flower crowns, nests, wreaths, pine cones, fertility goddesses/symbols, horns, cauldrons, Priapic wand, honey, besoms, faeries, bees, cows, doves, frogs, Rose Quartz, Bloodstone, Emerald, Malachite, and generally stick to yellow, green, pink, white, and pastel color combinations.
2. Make a May Pole or a May Bush. The May Pole is more traditional in our symbolism of Beltane and “May Day” (celebrated on May 1st), which is basically a pole or tree with no branches (very phallic), and it’s decorated with flowers, ribbons, and greenery. People would dance around the May Pole, wrapping the ribbons around it, honoring fertility, growth, and blessings of this time of year. The end result is a beautiful weaving of the ribbons around the pole. A May Bush is a similar idea, of decorating a bush with ribbons and decorations with the same idea in mind.
3. Light a bonfire. In keeping with the old traditions, start a bonfire! Or light a candle, start a fire in your cauldron, light a match, whatever you can do! It would be amazing if you could find a place where you could actually gather around with people you care about around a fire and dance and/or drum around the fire.
4. Participate in sex magick. Since Beltane is honoring fertility, it makes sense to participate in sex magick! This can be about honoring or exploring kinks, having sex with someone special to you, having sex outdoors in nature, masturbating in a cone of magick, buying new sex toys, bringing more romance into your life, romancing yourself… whatever you want! Sometimes people would plunge a scepter into a cup as an imitation of penetration, just as the symbolic act of sex and fertilization. How can you get creative with symbolizing fertility?
5. Beautify nature. This might be going out to do something for the environment like picking up litter, beautifying a space in need of some tender love and care, making your own garden, engaging with faeries, going on a nature walk, having a picnic.
6. Make a Priapic Wand. This is a fun DIY project where you basically attach a pine cone to the top of a stick or rod, and then decorate it with whatever else you’d like including string, yarn, flowers, leaves, feathers, etc. The wand is great for casting love and abundance spells, and boosting energy, strength, and confidence.
7. Renew yourself. Get a new haircut or hairstyle. Decorate your home, declutter your house. Shed your skin. Start a new ritual.
8. Make a flower crown. Collect flowers and make your own DIY flower crown with a simple wire or pre-made basic headband. Or buy one from a local crafter. You can use real or fake flowers. Wear it all day!
9. Research the Horned God and/or goddess Flora, both of which are closely related to the celebrations of Beltane. Do you connect with them? Maybe do some journaling or art projects inspired by them.
10. Create a Beltane ritual. Lastly, the best thing you can do for yourself is to just create a ritual that feels the best to you! There are tons of other things you can do to celebrate Beltane that I haven’t mentioned, and maybe you want to incorporate those into your own personalized ritual. For example, a Beltane party on April 30th or May 1st, decorating your house, getting a Tarot reading, educating people on the origins of Beltane, doing Beltane/spring-themed crafts, making a tiny maypole with a dowel rod and ribbons, take a ritual bath with purifying minerals and herbs, find a special body of water or a well, tap into your spontaneous energy, make abundance berries with cream, make honey wishing yogurt, make charged sun cakes, journaling about how you connect to your sexuality, connecting to nature, say a Beltane blessing/prayer, etc, wearing yellow, green, pink, and/or white, wearing leaves and flowers all over your body, being completely naked in nature, having a potluck picnic, attending a Tree Of Life ceremony or May Pole Festival, listening to songs about fertility and sex,. Do what feels right to you!
I made you a downloadable cheat sheet with the colors, crystals, apothecary, foods, activities, and altar supplies for your ease. Download it for free below!